The Scandal of the season: ‘Bridgerton’s’ queerbaiting


Emma Fudacz

This author finds the queerbaiting in the Bridgerton trailer to be the biggest scandal this season.

Dear reader,

This author has been obsessed with “Bridgerton” like the rest of the world- who could resist the romance, the Regency-era dresses, and the scandalous drama? But could the virality of the show be a result of false advertising such as queerbaiting it’s audience? The answer is yes, dear reader.

Queer-baiting is defined as a marketing technique for entertainment when creators hint at, but then do not actually depict LGBTQ representation. Basically, it is used to draw in the LGBTQ audience, who might not otherwise watch, but not give any queer representation, so as to not possibly alienate other viewers.

The first teaser trailer, released on Nov. 2, included a gay scene between two men that one of the main characters, Benedict Bridgerton, walked in on. This implied that it would be one of the important plot points in the show. However, when this author watched “Bridgerton,” it was a topic that was barely addressed.

In fact, Twitter users seem to have strong feelings about the false advertising of the show. One Twitter user said, “Have a love-hate feeling towards Bridgerton…liked the story, hated the queer-baiting trailer!!”

Another reason that fans of the show were disappointed in the lack of LGBTQ representation was because the show did not shy away from addressing other current topics. The show sparked conversation about the wealth gap between white people and POC, women’s rights and race, but didn’t bother to address the struggles of the LGBTQ community, or reflect LGBTQ diversity in its characters.

“Bridgerton” is not particularly concerned with historical accuracy either, seeing as the characters dance to instrumental versions of pop songs such as “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish, “In My Blood” by Shawn Mendes and “Girls Like You” by Maroon 5. So if the show isn’t worried about not getting everything about the time period correct, this author is left to wonder why “Bridgerton” failed to include LGBTQ representation?

And so, dear reader, perhaps the scandal of the season isn’t Daphne Bridgerton’s courtship with the Duke of Hastings, or Marina Thompson’s pregnancy, but the false advertising and queer-baiting of the “Bridgerton” marketing.

Yours truly,
Lady Fudacz